TORONTO (AP) NHL meetings are set for this week to discuss whether the league will participate in the 2018 Olympics in South Korea.
League officials will meet with the International Ice Hockey Federation in New York on Wednesday. Deputy commissioner Bill Daly said the NHL hopes to learn if any traction has been made between the IIHF and the International Olympic Committee with regard to potential sticking points, including money issues. NHL officials have expressed concerns that the IOC is not willing to cover out-of-pocket payments it took care of at the past five Olympics.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said those costs were upward of $10 million during a two-week hiatus next season.
''I can't imagine the NHL owners are willing to pay for the privilege of shutting down for 17 days,'' Bettman said Monday at the Prime Time Sports Management Conference in Toronto. ''I just don't see that.''
If the IOC is not willing to figure out the expenses, Daly said, the NHL and NHL players' association will have to jointly determine whether to proceed with participation in a sixth consecutive Winter Games.
Bettman said a decision would need to be made by early January at the latest. He also took aim at the restrictive policies of the IOC with regard to the Olympics.
''We're not allowed to be associated with the Olympics. We're not allowed to promote that we're there. We're not allowed to use the trademarks and logos. We're not allowed to use the footage,'' he said. ''The IOC says this is the way we're going to do it. `We're not going to pay. You can't do this. You can't do that.' It doesn't give you the warm and fuzzies.''
NHL and NHLPA officials recently visited the Olympic site in Pyeongchang, believing it to be suitable for international competition.